The 2018 Rip Curl Cup is officially on "High Alert" to be held on Sunday, July 15th at Padang Padang, Bali, Indonesia. With an impressive South West swell currently tracking towards Bali, event directors have changed the official event status from Red (Standby) to Yellow (High Alert), and surfers are now on call for a potential Sunday, 7am local Bali start time to run the one-day World Surf League specialty event.
Event Director and Rip Curl SEA Marketing Manager, James Hendy, has high hopes for the swell to bring a Green Light on Sunday. "As surfers in Indonesia, this is what we wait all year for," he said. "Our goal is to see eight of the world's best tube riders and eight of the best local Padang specialists testing their limits on the best day of the year at Padang. Anything less and we don't run. This swell is looking very promising, and with some help from the Bali gods, hopefully the surfing world will be in for another amazing Rip Curl Cup on Sunday."
Official event surf forecaster Surfline is calling for a powerful, long-period SW swell to build in this weekend and peak through the afternoon on Sunday, July 15th. Coming from an ideal westerly angle (219°) to catch the reef at Padang Padang, this swell appears to be quite similar to the Rip Curl Cup Trials swell that produced all-day fireworks at Padang on May 27th.
According to Surfline, "The storm has tracked further north than the average Indian Ocean storm, which means it's closer to Bali. This should help with both size and consistency. Face size should be in the 8-10 foot range during the higher tide hours, with more size over the afternoon as the tide drops and the largest sets push up to 12'+ faces."
Local winds at Padang on Sunday should be good to excellent with moderate to breezy SE/ESE trades expected.
Defending Rip Curl Cup Champion and Padang local Mega Semadhi is excited to be coming back for another year of competition, and is gearing up to battle it out for the win. "Padang is one of the best waves in Indonesia," he said. "It's the perfect spot to share with some of the best tube riders in the world. When you get that combination of wave quality and talent for one special day, everyone is always going to leave stoked no matter where they end up finishing. But of course, I'm going to do everything I can to win The Cup for the third time. Hopefully Dewa Baruna, the ocean god, is on our side and blesses us with good swell for Padang."
The majority of the 16 invited surfers - eight of Indonesia's best and eight of the world's top tube riders - are currently standing by on Bali's Bukit Peninsula, preparing to catch this swell. The remaining invitees are already on their way to Bali or preparing to board flights. Event directors will be ready to run early Sunday morning if the barrels at Padang reach the world-class caliber required to hold the Rip Curl Cup.
The 2018 Rip Curl Cup Padang Padang will be webcast live to the world at ripcurl.asia and worldsurfleague.com. Fans can also visit the site to check the latest Padang Padang swell forecast from official event forecaster Surfline, including real-time contest status and video updates from Bali.
Following is the official heat draw for the first two rounds of competition at Padang Padang:
Heat 1 Garut Widiarta (IND) Mason Ho (HAW)-TBC Agus "Blacky" Setiawan (IND)Jay Davies (AUS)
Heat 2 Lee Wilson (IND), Josh Kerr (AUS), Mustofa Jeksen (IND), Bruno Santos (BRA)
Heat 3 Mega Semadhi (IND), Jack Robinson (AUS), Alik Rudiarta (IND), Gearoid McDaid (IRL)
Heat 4 Bol Adi Putra (IND), Nic Von Rupp (PRT), Mega Artana (IND), Jacob Willcox (AUS)
Heat 1 Garut Widiarta (IND), Bruno Santos (BRA), Mustofa Jeksen (IND), Jacob Willcox (AUS)
Heat 2 Lee Wilson (IND), Jack Robinson (AUS), Agus "Blacky" Setiawan (IND), Gearoid McDaid (IRL)
Heat 3 Mega Semadhi (IND), Josh Kerr (AUS), Mega Artana (IND), Nic Von Rupp (PRT)
Heat 4 Made Adi Putra (IND), Mason Ho (HAW) TBC, Alik Rudiarta (IND), Jay Davies (AUS)